The Inland Theatre League started in 1975 and was the brainchild of T.E. Foreman, resident theatre reviewer for the then Daily Enterprise and The Press, the Riverside newspaper. As a member of the Los Angeles Critics’ Circle, T.E. is among the Critics awarding theatre participants in Southern California each year for outstanding professional work.
Although most Inland Empire theatre groups present their own awards each year, many outstanding performances, direction, technical, wardrobe and other production areas are not recognized. T.E. thought all areas of a theatre’s production should be eligible for some kind of an award, so we came up with the idea of not having a “best” of any category but to award all who reach what we call a standard of excellence in all areas. Our credo is to “recognize and encourage excellence in theatre.”
We have a numbers of judges whose job is to view at least 10 productions each year and to nominate candidates for our Certificate of Excellence. We currently have over 50 member theatres covering most of the Inland Empire. The League’s awards are presented each year, usually in March or April in Riverside.
The original member groups in 1975 were: California Baptist College, Riverside Community Players, UC Riverside, Riverside City College, and Loma Linda University’s Society of Demonstrative Arts.